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Hearst Eliminates the Ad Sales Staff at Country Living Magazine

Replaced Edit Staff Earlier This Year

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Hearst-owned Country Living magazine moved its editorial headquarters to Birmingham, Ala., from New York.
Hearst-owned Country Living magazine moved its editorial headquarters to Birmingham, Ala., from New York.

Hearst has eliminated the ad sales team at Country Living magazine, Ad Age has learned. Its responsibilities will be handled by staff at sibling titles Good Housekeeping and Woman's Day as well as outside representatives.

A spokeswoman for Country Living said in an email that a "handful" of people were affected by the decision.

"Country Living's edit staff is in Birmingham, and we're aligning sales to be closer to clients in key markets," she said in the email.

"We're working to find roles within the company for the handful of staff affected," she added.

A Hearst Magazines spokeswoman declined to say exactly how many people lost their posts. Staff learned of the cuts last week.

Publisher Jane Wladar, who was among those affected, did not respond to a phone message and an email seeking comment on Wednesday.

Print ad pages at Country Living have fallen sharply this year through March, dropping 32.5% from the period a year earlier.

Country Living recently moved its editorial office to Birmingham, Ala., from New York and hired a new editorial team there. Hearst Magazines President David Carey said last year when the company announced the move that it planned to find new positions for some of the 20 editorial staffers affected.

Country Living's total paid and verified circulation was off slightly -- about 1% -- through the last six months of 2013, to 1.6 million, according to its report with the Alliance for Audited Media.

Country Living is part of Hearst's Women's Lifestyle Group, which also includes Good Housekeeping and Woman's Day, with Pat Haegele continuing to lead the group as its chief revenue officer.

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